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Archive for May, 2013

Trends and Tips in Business Travel

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

Business travel can be very frustrating, especially when travelers check out of hotels and notice unexpected charges on their receipt. Hotel bills have included unexpected fees for years but, in today’s highly competitive market business travelers and their companies now need complete rate transparency. With the CLC Lodging program, travelers know what their total cost will be whenever they select one of our partner hotels.  While searching our online listing of network hotels, travelers can view a total charge summary for their upcoming stay.  This summary is essentially a ‘sample receipt’ which lists the total charges for the duration of your stay – it includes the hotel room rate, the transaction fee and taxes.

In order to keep costs down, companies are making changes to their travel policies. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal highlighted that business travelers are being more frugal. The article explains a popular trend, “Companies are also trimming their lists of preferred hotels down to just four or five in a given city, using the increased volume to negotiate better rates.” While this is a smart idea, it can create more work to try to negotiate with the hotels. Companies are realizing that they can save that time by passing the work on to CLC Lodging. We have pre-negotiated rates with over 10,000 hotels and we pass on those savings to our customers.

Another trend that is becoming more and more apparent is the increased travel by Generation Y. The travel industry is making changes as the Baby Boomers are traveling less and Generation Y is hitting a peak in business travel. Generation Y is full of technology savvy travelers that use their smartphone as a means of communication and a source of information. Approximately 76% of CLC Lodging customers are taking advantage of the CLC Hotel Locater app to ease the process of searching for hotels.

Knowing where you can access fast, dependable Internet becomes very important when work must be completed while traveling. Stay at your most productive and book your hotels by knowing which ones have free internet connections. When choosing your hotel using the CLC Lodging website check the box for “Internet” to limit your hotel selections to those with internet connectivity.

A job that keeps you on the road probably keeps you out of the gym. But studies have shown that not taking care of your body properly only promotes a bad work ethic in the long run. Eating healthy and getting the proper amount of exercise gives you more energy for traveling (and who doesn’t need that!) and serves as an escape from travel and work-related stresses. Your best bet? Check out your hotel’s fitness center or take part in a walking or jogging tour of your destination city.

Eating breakfast at the hotel is convenient, but can be costly. However, stopping at the coffee shop down the street can be time consuming and sometimes just as costly. Many hotels offer free breakfast and when you select your hotel on the CLC Lodging website you can click the box for “Breakfast” to limit your selections to only hotels that offer a free breakfast.

Travel buyers are studying transactions more carefully to cut costs and improve returns. Small and medium sized businesses look for ways to manage their travel expenditures in more sophisticated ways. The need to track bookings and manage travel expenses continues to grow in the increasingly competitive market. CLC Lodging’s online reporting and travel management tools provide a convenient and free resource to help businesses of all sizes manage their travel expenses.

The cost of fuel is a constant source of frustration to fleet owners and managers. Recent polls have shown that 78% of fleet operators are frustrated with fueling costs. While the money saved on lodging expenses when you use CLC Lodging can offset that expense, our parent company FleetCor also has some other options that may help you with your rising fuel costs. Fuelman (a FleetCor company) offers a nationwide network of low-priced fuel and maintenance locations. You can also track and monitor fleet fuel expenses by vehicle and driver and consolidate all your fleet expenses with one report, making it easier to manage your business. Finally, just like CLC Lodging you can access your account anywhere, anytime with a detailed online account management tool.

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